Mitchell in October 2008
November 4, 1919|
Toledo, Ohio, U.S.
|Died||November 11, 2013
Westwood, Los Angeles, California
|Resting place||Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery, Los Angeles, California|
|Alma mater||University of Toledo
University of Michigan
|Occupation||Radio, film, and television actress|
|Spouse(s)||Julian Frieden (1946–1974; divorced); 2 children
Jay Livingston (1992-2001; his death)
Shirley Mitchell (November 4, 1919 – November 11, 2013) was an American radio, film, and television actress.
Following a move to Chicago, Mitchell appeared in the network broadcast of The First Nighter Program and played small parts in various soap operas including The Story of Mary Marlin and The Road of Life. After she relocated to Los Angeles, she played opposite Joan Davis and Jack Haley in The Sealtest Village Store. She also starred as Louella in The Life of Riley and joined the cast of Fibber McGee and Molly as Alice Darling in 1943. She also played in The Charlotte Greenwood Show.
Her most prominent radio role was that of the charismatic Southern belle Leila Ransom on The Great Gildersleeve radio show beginning in September 1942. In the third season of CBS's I Love Lucy, from 1953–54, she appeared in three episodes as Lucy Ricardo's friend with the funny laugh, Marion Strong. She was the last surviving recurring adult cast member following the deaths of Doris Singleton in 2012 and Peggy Rea in 2011.
In 1962, she played Janet Colton in thirteen episodes of another CBS sitcom, Pete and Gladys, starring Harry Morgan and Cara Williams, with Peter Leeds cast as her husband, George Colton. Between 1963-65, she made five appearances on Perry Mason, including in the 1965 episode "The Case of the Carefree Coronary", when she played Marilyn David, the widow of a murder victim. In 1964, she played the role of murder victim Elizabeth Bain, although her character was only heard, not seen, in "The Case of the Woeful Widower."
From 1965–67, she appeared as neighbor Marge Thornton on NBC's series Please Don't Eat the Daisies. She went on to appear in several TV shows of the 1960s (like Petticoat Junction, as 'Cousin Mae' in 1968) & did voice-over work in subsequent decades. Mitchell voiced Laurie Holliday on Hanna-Barbera's short-lived series The Roman Holidays in 1972. She also appeared in an episode of the ABC crime drama The Feather and Father Gang in 1977.
By August 1955, they had two children, a girl followed by a boy, Brooke, and Scott, respectively. Mitchell and Frieden divorced in August 1974. In 1992, she married songwriter Jay Livingston and the two remained married until his death in 2001.
Mitchell died of heart failure on November 11, 2013, at the age of 94.
- Dagan, Carmel (November 13, 2013). "Shirley Mitchell, Who Appeared in ‘I Love Lucy,’ Dies at 94". Variety. Retrieved 2013-11-13.
- "Shirley Mitchell Honored". Toledo Blade. October 3, 1946. p. 18. Retrieved 2013-11-13.
- Dunning, John. (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3. P. 150.
- Barnes, Mike (November 13, 2013). "'I Love Lucy' Actress Shirley Mitchell Dies at 94". The Hollywood Reporter.
- "Shirley Mitchell: She Just Acts the Nosy Part". The Press-Courier/Press-Courier TV Week (Oxnard, California). January 30, 1966. p. 3. Retrieved 2013-11-13.
- stefaniepowersonline.com The Feather and Father Gang
- "Shirley Mitchell: CBS' 'Leave It to Joan'". The Sherbrooke Telegram (Sherbrooke, Quebec). February 2, 1950. p. 3. Retrieved 2013-11-13.
- Woodbury, Mitch. "Mitch Woodbury Reports". Toledo Blade. Retrieved 2013-11-13.
It's a boy for Dr. and Mrs. Julian H. Frieden of Hollywood. Mrs. Frieden is Toledo's Shirley Mitchell, well known television and radio actress. She already is the proud mother of a daughter.
- Shirley Mitchell at the Internet Movie Database
- "Paid Notice: Deaths: Frieden, Dr. Julian". The New York Times. October 12, 2003. Retrieved 2013-11-13.
- Servo, Richard (October 18, 2001). "Jay Livingston, 86, Who Wrote Hit Songs With Ray Evans for the Movies, Dies". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-11-15.